History of the Mid-Atlantic Nutrition Conference
The 50th Anniversary of the Maryland Nutrition Conference for Feed Manufacturers was marked by many highlights and a few lows, as is common at most anniversaries. We had some firsts and some lasts and we took some programmatic chances.
This conference, the Golden Anniversary of The Maryland Nutrition Conference for Feed Manufacturers, was dedicated to Dr. Gerald Combs, Sr. A poster bearing photographs of a young Dr. Combs, Sr. and early Conference Committees and listing the programs of the 1st, 25th, and 50th Maryland Nutrition Conference for Feed Manufacturers was constructed. The poster was positioned above a display of Proceedings from each of the fifty Conferences and a document containing the Table of Contents from each conference. Dr. Combs was instrumental in initiating the first conference and has maintained interest and input throughout 50 years.
The brightest highlight was the presentation by Dr. Gerald Combs, Sr. Dr. Combs started the conference in 1953 and returned from retirement to give the keynote address in 2003. Preceding Dr. Gerald Combs, Sr. at the lectern was Dr. Gerald Combs, Jr. This was the first, and perhaps last, time father and son have spoken at the same conference. Both gave outstanding presentations. Dr. Comb’s, Sr. presentation titled, “Reflections on Fifty Years of the Maryland Nutrition Conference for Feed Manufacturers” was followed by a long standing ovation.
The 50th Conference included the first Equine Nutrition Program. Congratulations are extended to Equine Program Co-chairs, Dr. Amy Ordakowski and Erin Petersen. Erin was a scheduled speaker and Amy filled-in for an ill speaker at the last minute. Erin submitted a grant proposal that generated $2000 in Program support from the Maryland Horse Industry Board. The Equine Program was well attended and will stand shoulder to shoulder with the Poultry and Dairy Nutrition Programs in the future.
The 50th Anniversary of the Maryland Nutrition Conference for Feed Manufacturers was co-titled the 1st Mid-Atlantic Nutrition Conference. Conference organizers had planned this transition to formalize direct participation of Maryland’s partner educational institutions in Delaware, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and West Virginia. Thus, the 50th Maryland Nutrition Conference was the last. However, it was reincarnated as the Mid-Atlantic Nutrition Conference with the blessing Dr. Gerald Combs, Sr. The 1st Mid-Atlantic Nutrition Conference was very successful, with nearly 200 participants. The Conference concluded on a high note with a great deal of enthusiasm and anticipation for the next Conference. The future of the Mid-Atlantic Nutrition Conference looks bright.
Much of the credit for the success of the Mid-Atlantic Nutrition Conference is attributable to the members of Maryland Feed Industry Council, especially Council President Dr. James McNaughton. All Council members were of great assistance in securing sponsorships and program planning. Dr. McNaughton created a workable plan for rotating responsibilities among the participating educational institutions. Continued industry support via the Feed Industry Council will insure the future success of the Mid-Atlantic Nutrition Conference.